Cassini finds ingredient for life at Saturn's moon Enceladus - Watch
The US space agency NASA's Cassini spacecraft has discovered hydrogen in the plume of gas and icy particles spraying from Saturn's sixth largest moon Enceladus.
New Delhi: The US space agency NASA's Cassini spacecraft has discovered hydrogen in the plume of gas and icy particles spraying from Saturn's sixth largest moon Enceladus.
According to NASA, the discovery means the small, icy moon — which has a global ocean under its surface — has a source of chemical energy that could be useful for microbes, if any exist there.
The finding have also provided further evidence that warm, mineral-laden water is pouring into the ocean from vents in the seafloor, as reported.
On Earth, such hydrothermal vents support thriving communities of life in complete isolation from sunlight.
Enceladus now appears likely to have all three of the ingredients scientists think life needs: liquid water, a source of energy such as sunlight or chemical energy, and the right chemical ingredients like carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen.
As per reports, Cassini is not able to detect life, and has found no evidence that Enceladus is inhabited. But if life is there, that means life is probably common throughout the cosmos; if life has not evolved there, it would suggest life is probably more complicated or unlikely than we have thought. Either way the implications are profound.
NASA said that future missions to Saturn's icy moon Enceladus may shed light on its habitability.
The US space agency has also released a video explaining that Saturn's icy moon Enceladus has all the basic ingredients for life.
Watch the video below.